Post-holidays life is a little cruel. Holidays over? Cheer, decorations, leisure time packed away? Ok great, your nose is imminently back to the grindstone. It’s hard to adjust back to the unrelenting parts of everyday life: work, home, personal stuff, and all those pesky resolutions. Being back at work for one day felt like I had never left. I think this is why people need constant vacations.
So, my confession for this week is this: in the face of chaos, I choose mindlessness. Temporarily.
This has worked wonders for my resolution to get back to the gym. During hectic work days I’ve been going to the gym on my lunch break and watching either Scrubs or Glee on the elliptical. I totally forget the world for 30-45 minutes. It’s a glorious escape. But it is an escape with intention. If I’m feeling fried, overly burdened, unfocused or just plain old negative, the best way to adjust my attitude is to turn my brain off completely. If I need a quick fix at work and don’t have time for the gym, I catch up on the backlog in my Google Reader. If I’m home and the dishes and laundry are piled up, the cat box needs changing, I have a million emails to read, blog posts to write, floors to sweep, and dinner to get on the table? Sometimes I just park it in front of the TV for 20 minutes and watch E! News, give myself a quick manicure, or do something similarly mind numbing.
I have already proclaimed 2012 the Year of Balance. For me, balance means being kind to myself. I know I’m garbage to myself and everyone around me if I’m feeling drained or crabby.
My final point is the Temporarily aspect. My confession here is not to humblebrag about my fancy free trips to the gym or my time wasting tips at work, it’s to share what is working to gain balance in my life when everything else seems crushingly overwhelming and potentially manic. We all feel like this from time to time. There has to be a way to cope while being good to yourself, so there is a limit to how long and how often to indulge. I limit my exploits in mindlessness to those aforementioned quick things (we all know that it’s super easy to fall down the rabbit hole of finding awesome new podcasts on iTunes for 3 hours, not that that’s happened to me…several times in the last week). So, try some temporary mindlessness. Indulge, be kind to yourself, but don’t go overboard. Find that balance. You might just find yourself more mindful, thoughtful, and joyful afterwards.